We have hit the stretch drive with less than a week to go before the Cubs break camp here in Arizona.
It’s been a pretty good camp I’d say, highlighted by an impressive preview of Javier Baez and Jorge Soler. In terms of the 25-man roster, we knew much of what we know now 6 weeks ago.
The position players were pretty much set, with the question of whether Ian Stewart would be healthy and productive (no on the healthy part of the equation for the moment). In fact, of the 3 big health questions, the answers have all come back a big no–Stewart, Matt Garza and Scott Baker.
Baker is the only one who has appeared in a Cactus League game, but that appearance resulted in an MRI and a visit with the team doctor this weekend. Garza appears to be progressing, but he won’t be back on the active roster until right around May 1st, barring any more setbacks.
So, for the time being, Luis Valbuena, Travis Wood and Carlos Villanueva will fill in and 3 other guys get roster spots as a result.
For the next week, the #1 key (and #2 and #3, etc) is HEALTH. This final week is nail-biting time for every manager and GM. Injuries now really mess up things so close to Opening Day.